What do I mean by that title? I hope it has pulled you into today’s blog.
Coin collectors today are becoming more and more familiar with holders and less and less familiar with their coins.
Are we in the process of losing our natural curiosity to closely examine those coins that we hold in hour hands?
I wondered that when I got the word that Stack’s Bowers will put a newly discovered rarity in their August American Numismatic Association auction.
The coin was not found in an attic, or dug up out of the ground. It was simply examined closely by a coin buyer.
What he had found was the 11th known example of the 1817 “7” over “4” Capped Bust half dollar.
He took a chance on it. He bought it. He studied it. He decided to submit it to a grading service, which confirmed his opinion.
He consigned it for auction and will likely live happily ever after with a nice six-figure price realized at the sale.
It pays to study your coins, even if you think they have been studied before by others.
There is no such thing as getting too familiar with a coin. Sometimes it is only then that secrets are revealed.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper is winner of the 2013 Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."